Do I Have Keynesian Sympathies?

The claim that radical subjectivists having sympathies for Keynesian economics is a popular one. I could somewhat understand why people think so. Ludwig Lachmann talked a lot about Keynes and gave credit to Keynesians whenever credit was due. He talked, and was influenced greatly, about George Shackle and his view on uncertainty and his wonderful critiques on neoclassical economics. He even thought that Shackle’s uncertainty was generally superior to Austrian uncertainty. I get why I get the “Keynesian sympathy” label. On my blogroll I have a few links to Keynesian blogs, and in some cases, I have defended the Keynesians on the comments section of the blogs, but I do not necessarily defend their policies, just cases in which I feel that people misrepresent them. I have said that Post Keynesian theory is similar to Austrian, well at least radical subjectivist, theory (political differences aside). So then do radical subjectivists have Keynesian sympathies… I think there is not an objective answer to that (I do consider myself a radical subjectivist for a reason), but I say no.

For the most part, what we like about Keynes and Post Keynesians is that their theories consider the real world and not some hypothetical situation to explain some kind of equilibrium analysis. Their critiques on the neoclassical branch of Austrian economics are, for the most part, spot on. I mean we have the same criticisms towards neoclassical economics but that does not mean that we have sympathies towards one another, we just understand each other when it comes to the subject. We disagree on some major things, the biggest one is how much government intervention is needed. Post Keynesians are generally social democrats and radical subjectivists are classical liberals. What I want to see is Post Keynesians and Austrians putting that difference aside and unite together to dismantle neoclassical economics!

-Isaac Marmolejo


2 responses to “Do I Have Keynesian Sympathies?

  1. So you would rather team up with statists in fighting a theoretical battle against neoclassicals than to team up with people that believe in limited government and fight against the statists, theoretical differences aside

    • You act like that is a bad thing. If you actually look at the Austrian School’s history, you will see that past Austrians were able to put aside political differences to develop theory. Look at Wieser, a quasi-socialist, who greatly influenced Von Mises and his understanding of utility and value. Mises’ basic argument that there would never be one efficient central planner is essentially Wieser’s argument in his book Natural Value. To a lesser extent, you can say the same for Hayek and Myrdal, while they did not influence each other in any way, they still contributed to the theory of business cycles together. Why, then is it a crime if we do the same in modern times with Post Keynesians?

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